Saturday Swim Session: Drills & Technique - Coach Ray

Coach Ray

Training for Excellence, with Excellent Training

Tri Swim Coach
Swim Sessions Triathlon Training

Saturday Swim Session: Drills & Technique

This swim session is a great way to enhance your efficiency and technique swimming. This session is perfect for Ironman and Olympic distance triathletes or people doing longer Ocean Swims.

Each week I will load three options up for you to do. Option A is for swimmers who are after a workout less than 2,000 metres. Option B is for swimmers who are after a workout between 2,000 and 3,000m and Option C will be greater than 3,000m.

Option A

  • 200m WU;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 8x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m CD (1,600m)

Option B

  • 400m WU;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m CD (2,200m)

Option C

  • 600m WU;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 12x 50m (25m Drill/25m Swim);
  • 200m Easy swim focusing on Tech;
  • 200m CD (3,200m)

Start the workout with a Warm Up (WU) covering 200m (Option A), 400m (Option B) or 600m (Option C). During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

Next up are eight (Option A) or twelve (Options B and C) repetitions of 50m Drill/Swim, where you do a drill for the first 25m of the repetition and then normal swimming for the next 25m swimming. Feel free to use fins whilst doing the drill/swim set.  Do the drills below, twice through for Options B and C, or once through with Kick On Side (left and right) repeated again for Option A:

  1. Kick On Side (KOS) left side
  2. Kick On Side (KOS) right side
  3. 6/1/6
  4. 6/3/6
  5. Popov
  6. Broken Arrow

I wrote an article about swimming drills previously. Click here to read and watch it.

Next up is a nice easy 200m swim where I want you to focus on technique. Maximise the amount of distance you travel with each stroke and stay as streamlined as possible, generating a powerful catch. Make sure you take the fins off for this set.

Once the 200m technique is done, put the fins back on and repeat a set of drill/swim set and another 200m technique focus. For Options A and B you will then move onto the Cool Down and Option C will complete a third drill/swim and technique set before the Cool Down.

It’s now time for a 200m Cool Down (CD). Unlike the previous sets which have to be freestyle, the cool down (like the warm up) can be any stroke you wish to swim.  You can also stop and rest after any length.  I encourage you to stop and stretch during the cool down.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact me.

I am the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi Coaching.

I specialise in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. I can be contacted at coachray@coachray.nz and 021 348 729.

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If you enjoyed this workout, here is a similar session I published 12 months ago.

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Ray has competed in triathlons from sprint to ironman distance (both IM Taupo and Challenge Wanaka). Consequently he is aware of the importance of balancing training with lifestyle, thus complimenting other important aspects of an athlete’s life (family, work, study commitments etc…). • Entering your first triathlon? • Stepping up to a longer distance? • Looking to go faster? • Wanting to turn previous negatives into positives? Ray has coached athletes to achieve these and more. Training programmes are accessible online, so athletes can be located anywhere and still reap the benefits of Ray’s coaching. Contact him to discuss how he can assist you to achieve your goals.
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